From the monthly archives: "February 2011"

Location: At sea, off Angola
February 3, 2011 9:34 am
Dear Mr. Bugman,
I met this fellow on an oil tanker today, about 75 miles off the coast of Angola, West Africa. It is 5-6 cm long, and was found on deck just after a thunder storm had gone by.
I believe it is a moth, but what is the full name?
Signature: Geir

Unknown Hawkmoth might be Convolvulus Hawkmoth

Hi Geir,
Upon working on this posting, we realized that this is the second time you have sent us an image of a Hawkmoth found at sea off of Angola.  Your first specimen was eventually recognized as a Verdant Hawkmoth.  Hawkmoths in the family Sphingidae are very powerful fliers, and that combined with with wind may have caused both specimens to alight on your oil tanker.  Hopefully, we will be able to eventually provide you with a species identification for this individual as well.

Update thanks to Karl
Hi Daniel and Geir:
Your hawkmoth doesn’t show many distinguishing features and unfortunately the hind wings and abdomen are not visible. However, I think it looks very much like a Convolvulus Hawkmoth (Agrius convolvuli). This is a common and very wide spread species ranging from southern Europe and all of Africa, across southern Asia to Australia (perhaps trying to extend its range further by jumping ship?). Not surprisingly, given its range, both adults and caterpillars show considerable variation, although adult color and pattern are generally fairly drab. That said, the pattern on the thorax, the pale checkering along the trailing edge of the forewing and the banded legs appear consistent in most images. If that isn’t the correct species, I believe Agrius is at least the right genus. Regards.  Karl

green lynx spider
Location: coastal san diego
February 2, 2011 1:04 pm
This will be the last time I visit your site. You have sent me two pass words and neither work. Just wanted to tell you that your life span information on the Green Lynx spider is incorrect. I have watched one continuously and she is now sitting on her second egg sac. She survived the December rains with her first spiderlings and became pregnant again. Since spiderlings winter over, I have to assume she started life in 2009. You can see the older egg sack in the picture to the left
Signature: meredith french

Green Lynx Spider with Egg Sac

Dear Meredith,
We are sorry to hear that you are having technical difficulties.  Our technical staff is completely separate from our editorial staff.  All we can say is that if our awesome webmaster cannot correct your problem, there must be a major system incompatibility that is creating the problem.  Thanks for sending your photo of a Green Lynx Spider protecting her second egg sac.  Green Lynx Spiders may produce multiple broods, but even under ideal conditions, it would be highly unusual for a female to live through a second season.

id a caterpillar
Location: Singapore
February 3, 2011 8:36 am
I was walking in the Singapore MacRitchie reservoir, and foaund a large family of these caterpillars. i have no knowledge about that, but we wonder what it will become in a few weeks?
Signature: Philippe

Unknown Caterpillar

Dear Philippe,
We tried to identify this social Caterpillar without much luck.  It will eventually metamorphose into a moth.  The Singapore Butterfly Interest Group website has no matching images, but it wouldn’t be much help if they did because none of the Moth Caterpillars there are identified.  The social feeding pattern should help in the identification, and knowing the food plant might also be of tremendous assistance.

Nice looking chestnut coloured bug
Location: Kilcowera Station, SW Queensland, Australia
February 3, 2011 5:44 am
This bug has never been seen before here or anywhere else. It’s body is about 4 cm long and is segmented, a bit like a centrepede, it has 15 legs on either side, the 2 at the end are very long. It has nippers at its mouth end like a centrepede too. And beady eyes.
Signature: Toni

House Centipede

Dear Toni,
There is a good reason your creature reminds you of a Centipede.  It is a House Centipede.

Thanks Daniel, I would have commented on wtb site but I can’t login even though I have registerd.  Thanks for identifying my bug!  It’s a great blog, cheers Toni

Found this in the Water…….
Location: Great Bend Zoo, Great Bend Kansas
February 2, 2011 5:06 pm
While tending to a busted waterline at the Great Bend Zoo, we found 2 of these swimming around in the freezing water. Temperature was about -2 with a windchill factor of -10 at the time we found them.
Signature: Johnny Z.

Horse Fly Larva

Hi Johnny,
You found a Horse Fly Larva.  You can compare your photo to the one on the Horse Flies and Deer Flies of Kentucky website.  Female Horse Flies which are also known as Gadflies feed upon blood and lay their eggs on plants near the water’s edge.  Most Horse Flies have aquatic larvae, but some Horse Fly larvae develop in damp earth.

Daniel Marlos,
Thank you so very much for such a fast response.  We weren’t quite for sure what it was, but we had guessed a larva of some sort.
Again, thank you for the fast response 🙂
Johnny Z.
-Zoo Keeper/Safety Officer, Great Bend-Brit Spaugh Zoo

caterpillar identification
Location: Dominica
February 2, 2011 3:36 pm
Dear Bugman,
I took these photos on the island of Dominica in the Caribbean in December of 2010. The caterpillar was very large, about 7 inches long. It had a very thin black tail and orange-red head. I hope you are able to identify it. Thank you.
Signature: Deb Beyer

Tetrio Sphinx Caterpillar

Hi Deb,
We instantly recognized your caterpillar to be that of the Tetrio Sphinx,
Pseudosphinx tetrio. The Tetrio Sphinx Caterpillar feeds upon the leaves of Plumeria or Frangipani, Allamandra, and other members of the Dogbane family.  You can see photos of the adult moth and get additional information on the Sphingidae of the Americas website.